Friday, March 29, 2013

March 27th Program Review - "Randy's Spring Break Vacation"

Unfortunately, the scheduled speaker for the Chula Vista Genealogical Society's March 27th Program, Claire Santos-Daigle, came down with pneumonia and was unable to make her "Photo Dating by Fashions" presentation.  

Randy Seaver stepped in on two day's notice and presented "What I Did on My Spring Break Vacation" to about 30 attendees.  Do you have visions of "Genealogists Gone Wild" or similar?  No, it wasn't quite that bad (or good, depending on your outlook) - Randy took us on a whirlwind photo tour of the Family History Library, including his own research successes, and the RootsTech 2013 Conference in Salt Lake City (March 21-23).  

In the first part, he showed photos of the inside of the Family History Library, including the rows of microfilm cabinets, the dark microfilm reader row, the microfilm scanner to computer screen to USB drive system, and images from English parish registers and Kansas cemetery cards.

RootsTech 2013 was a busy three days, with the theme of "Where Families Connect," with an emphasis on how to find, organize, preserve and share family history.  There were Keynote talks every morning by well-known people, followed by over 250 hour-long presentations and workshops in about 20 tracks on the themes of genealogy, stories and technology.  Randy shared what he learned about some of the genealogy companies during his talk - especially FamilySearch, Ancestry and MyHeritage.  His photos took the audience around the exhibit hall, showing the booths of small and large companies alike.  He spent some of his time in the Media Hub as an Official Blogger, writing blog posts or talking to presenters and other bloggers. You can read Randy's blog posts, and posts of all of the geneabloggers at RootsTech 2013, in

It wasn't all fun and games in the exhibit hall and the presentations - there were evening activities also.  Randy attended the Official Bloggers Dinner hosted by FamilySearch on Wednesday night, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir "Salute to Irving Berlin" on Thursday night by special invitation, and "King of the Geneabloggers" Thomas MacEntee's 50th birthday party with 100 others on Friday night.  That came the closest to the "Genealogists Gone Wild" image...with a photo booth, loud music, some eating and drinking, lots of picture taking, colorful beads, and great conversation.  

Randy picked up a free six-month subscription to MyHeritage at RootsTech 2013 and decided to give it away to a lucky attendee - Sunny Van Cleave won it in a drawing after his presentation.

There are 13 RootsTech 2013 presentations available for online viewing at  Scroll down and click on a link to one of the talks.  The Keynote talks are excellent, as are all of the other presentations.  If you want to download the syllabus material for each presentation, go to, click on the day you want, then click on the link for each session to read or download the syllabus for that presentation.  Some are in PDF format and some are in DOC format.

The URL for this post is:

No comments: